LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — Our nation and region are in need of more nurses and health care workers. A $20 million donation from LHC group to the University of Louisiana-Lafayette will go toward expanding the nursing curriculum and attracting more students.
“This will be a transformational gift that will help us expand programs, add new students, and produce many more healthcare professionals to serve not only Acadiana but across the state in the country,” says UL President Joe Savoie. “This gift is the single largest investment in the university’s history.”
The $20 million investment over 10 years will advance construction on a new health sciences building and will increase scholarship funding for nursing students. This new building will allow the university to accept more students.
“The College of Nursing is one of the largest colleges of nursing in the country and it’s maintained its enrollment. In fact, we are unable each year to except almost 200 qualified nursing student applicants just because we don’t have the space and the faculty to handle them. This gift will begin to change that,” says Savoie.
Dr. Melinda Oberleitner, the Dean of the College of Nursing and Allied Health Professions, is an alumnus of the nursing program at UL.
“I have watched this program grow and become the exceptional program that it is today. This is a testimony to our alumni, to our faculty, to our current students, and to our wonderful nationally ranked outcomes”, says Dr. Oberleitner.
Dr. Oberleitner says that UL nursing students were among the first volunteers to respond at the beginning of the pandemic.